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Famous women you didn’t know were in Lesbian relationships

Robyn Exton

Dec 29, 2022

Famous women you didn’t know were in Lesbian relationships
  • Throughout the years, we’ve seen high-profile lesbians be bold and courageous enough to come out during times when it wasn’t as accepted as it is now, and we still got a long way to go!

    Ellen Degeneres, Katherine Hepburn, and other amazing ladies paved the way for young celebrities, so they can have a safe space to love who they want publicly and without fear of being shunned from the industry.  That’s why, it must come as a surprise that you didn’t know some of your favorite stars actually gay! Can’t blame them for wanting a little privacy, but if you missed them coming out of the closet, now is the time to keep up.

    Below, we will recount nine celebrity lesbian couples who profess their love publicly and without fear of judgment. These women are a real inspiration to us all!

    Wanda Sykes & Alex Sykes

    We all know the wonderful Wanda Sykes, she’s been in the industry for a while in hit productions like the Drew Carry Show (2001), Evan Almighty (2007), and the popular ABC show Black-ish (2015), and charms everyone with her charisma and on-point humor.

    In the year 2008, when Proposition 8 was on the ballot in the US state of California, Wanda came out as a loud and proud lesbian at a Las Vegas rally. Just one month later, she married her girlfriend of two years, Alex Niedbalski, and they have been happily married ever since.

    Wanda and Alex went public at a time when the United States’ political winds were beginning to change. They struck alongside many members of the LGBTQA+ community against Proposition 8 and other similar unconstitutional bans across the country after decades of both subtle and blatant suppression. The couple was amongst the heroes who banded together to stop the bigotry baked into the law.

    What makes Wanda’s story so remarkable is how few people actually remember it. While she was fairly high-profile at the time, her actions quickly faded into the background, allowing her to live a relatively normal and loving life with her wife, Alex. 

    Wanda’s bravery is an inspiration to all lesbians!


    Stephanie Allynne & Tig Notaro

    Stephanie Allynne is an American actress who has starred in several bronze-screen roles, including Nancy from In a World (2013), Charlie from People Places Things (2015), and Zoe in Punching Henry (2015). It was while shooting In a World that she met her fellow actress, Tig Notaro, and the two of them fell head over heels for one another!

    Both Stephanie and Tig have starred in several cutesy movies, and after they developed their relationship more, they began to take roles and work together, which only improved their screen presence and overall chemistry! In several interviews, both women have gushed over how much they loved each other and how the emptiness of trying to conform to heteronormative relationships before they met each other. Now, they have been happily married for almost seven years.


    Kate McKinnon & Jackie Abbott

    Kate McKinnon is best known for her role as Hillary Clinton on SNL, her starring lead role in the 2016 Ghostbusters remake, and the voice of Ms. Frizzle in the Magic School Bus animated series for kids. In total, she has over 75 credits to her acting name and even produced a TV mini-series, Joe vs. Carole. As for Jackie Abbott, while she is much less well-known than her girlfriend, she has a few minor film credits to her name on the bronze screen as well. 

    Unlike most of the other couples on this list, and for a good reason, Kate and Jackie are exceedingly secretive about their private lives. As most non-hetero couples are aware, the media likes to pry invasively into the lives of celesbians and other members of the famous queer community. 


    Megan Rapinoe & Sue Bird

    These two truly scored the love lottery. I mean, how many couples meet during THE OLYMPICS?  Four-time WBNA champ and five-time Olympic gold medalist Sue Bird has been in a relationship with football star Megan Rapinoe (also an Olympic gold medalist, by the way) since 2017, coming out the moment they went public. Prior to that, only Megan was open as a lesbian since 2012, which is still only 10 years ago.

    In a patriarchal society, women, let alone gay women, have always had to work twice as hard to gain recognition, especially in a so-called male-dominated industry such as sports. But these two superstars are prime examples of excellence, talent, dedication, and inspiration to love freely because their successes and impact are way bigger than whatever people may think.

    It’s notable to mention that Megan and Sue have been engaged since 2020, and we might see them tie the knot after the World Cup, fingers crossed!


    Robin Roberts & Amber Laign

    Who would think a passionate journalist and a holistic entrepreneur make the perfect pair. Robin Roberts is known worldwide for being the heart of the hit broadcast TV show Good Morning America since 2002, covering some of the most impactful stories in recent history and being in the public eye for quite some time.

    Everybody feels ready to come out on their own time, and for a while, nobody knew about Roberts’ private life. That was until 2013 when, at 53 years old, she publicly announced her relationship with businesswoman Amber Laign, but even since then, they are not the typical ‘tabloid’ kind of couple.

    Robin and Amber have both battled cancer and have been supporting each other every step of the way. A situation like this can be difficult to handle for many partners, so their love and dedication are genuinely worth admiring.


    Ariana DeBose & Sue Makkoo

    This beautiful pair met at the Musical Theatre capital of the world: Broadway, during their run of Summer: The Donna Summer Musical (2018), with DeBose playing Disco Donna and Makkoo as a costume associate.

    They took their love backstage in both a literal and a metaphorical sense since they try to keep their relationship out of the spotlight. Still, the talented triple-threat and widely-recognized fashion designer didn’t hesitate to show a little PDA during their first public appearance at the Vanity Fair Oscar Party.

    Together,  they’re living the lesbian dream, sharing a cozy cottage in New York. 

    We celebrate Ariana’s triumphs in being proudly out, and most recently, because she became the first woman of color to win the Best Supporting Actress Award in the latest edition of the Oscars, making history and paving the way for so many girls in the future.


    Heather Matarazzo & Heather Turman 

    Let’s blast into the past and talk about our favorite rom-com BFF: Lily from The Princess Diaries! 

    Heather Matarazzo has been in our hearts since our childhood, but you might also know her from the cult classic Welcome to the Dollhouse (1995)  and a couple of films in the Scream (2000 & 2022) franchise.

    Even with this acting repertoire, she’s more on the low-key side of celebrities, being more vocal about politics and activism than her private life. But in 2004, she came out as a lesbian, an act of bravery considering people were used to seeing her on the Disney Channel and the general atmosphere for LGBTQA+ folk in the early 2000s.

    Now, she’s engaged to a fellow actress, filmmaker, and comedian: Heather Turman. The couple met on the set of “Stuck” and currently work together supporting their own personal projects.


    Jessica Phillips & Chelsea Nachman

    Sometimes, the reason why we don’t know about a celebrity’s sexual orientation is because they’re still figuring it out themselves, and that might resonate with many of us in the community.

    Jessica Phillips is an extremely talented broadway actress known for her role in the world-famous hit musical “Dear Evan Hansen.” She lived her life believing she was a straight woman, forming a family and going through two divorces. Then the COVID-19 pandemic kicked in. During the first months of quarantine, she realized something very important about herself.

    At 50 years old, she is now out and proud, flaunting her relationship with Broadway colleague Chelsea Nachman. The two share their love very openly on social media, and we’re so happy to see them live their truth, no matter when they begin to do so.


    Rebel Wilson & Ramona Agruma

    Pitch Perfect (2012)  and Senior Year (2022) actress has been in the limelight consistently for a decade, from viral memes, thanks to her quotable line delivery, to her body transformation and, of course, her love life.

    Nonetheless, it was definitely a plot twist when she posted a photo with a caption that said:

    “I thought I was searching for a Disney Prince… but maybe what I really needed all this time was a Disney Princess #loveislove”

    She had been hinting at being in a relationship for a couple of months prior but was pretty secretive about it until the Girlfriend Reveal + Coming Out post combo. Since then, we have loved to see her share adorable moments with leisure wear designer Ramona Agruma.

    The Aussie comedian recently had a beautiful baby girl born via surrogacy, and even if the couple is trying to take things slow, we surely wish them the best of luck in this new adventure.


    True love has always been an act of bravery, and what these women and many others do is revolutionary. Even if it’s more normalized than 20 years ago, every notable lesbian out of the closet makes a difference in today’s society, contributes to representation, and acts as a symbol of hope for those who can’t come out yet.

    Join our safe community 🌈 ✨ 

    Whether you are a stem lesbian or just hoping to meet new people, HER is a queer dating app that can help introduce you to many different open-minded people. It’s safer (and more fun) than your run-of-the-mill lesbian chat room, so don’t be afraid to check us out! We’re all about helping you foster the relationships you’re after. 

    Robyn Exton

    Robyn is the CEO & Founder of HER. Find her on Twitter.

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